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In The News

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Longtime PLU supporter Jennie Lee Hansen dies

Jennie Lee Hansen '34, longtime supporter of PLU, died in September. Jenni and her husband, Arthur, were honored with a President's Medal in March, a commemoration of their ardent support of PLU's missions and goals.
      For more than 20 years, Jennie and Arthur encouraged students through Q Club gifts, special challenge grants and a scholarship fund, and most recently served as role models in the Make a Lasting Difference Campaign, of which they were honorary co-chairs.
      Hansen was a retired teacher.

PLU co-sponsors major Latino conference in October

PLU joined several Pierce County groups to sponsor a major conference, "Latino Contributions to Contemporary American Society," in October. Through a keynote address by Dolores Huerta, the co-founder of the United Farm Workers; an exhibit by Mexican-American artist Alfredo Arreguin; and scholarly presentations, the conference displayed Latino successes and brought positive visibility to the largest ethnic community in Washington state. Arturo Biblarz, professor of sociology, was the conference co-chair.

Upshaw named vice president of finance and operations

Retired Marine Col. Charles Upshaw becomes the new vice president of finance and operations at PLU in January.
      Upshaw, former vice president for administration and finance and chief financial officer at Marietta College in Marietta, Ohio, replaces Bill Frame, who became president of Augsburg College in Minneapolis this summer. Jeff Jordan, PLU's director of residential life and auxiliary services, held the interim position since July.
      "Upshaw brings to us a distinguished military and academic record," said President Loren Anderson. "He also brings a depth of experience in higher education finance and a deep commitment to the values and the mission of PLU."
      In his new position, Upshaw will oversee a budget of $55 million and all business operations, including the business office, food service, physical plant, printing and the bookstore.

PLU study explores family business characteristics, wins first-place award

Family businesses in Washington state place strong emphasis on business challenges, goals and management practices, seeking to be successful businesses first and foremost, according to a new award-winning study by two professors and a student at PLU.
      The study was presented as a paper by Joseph McCann, dean of the PLU School of Business, Anna Leon-Guerrero, sociology preofessor, and Jonathan D. Haley '96. The paper, "Family Business with a Capital B: Characteristics, Priorities and Performance of Family Firms," received a first-place award at the 1997 International Family Business Program Association Annual Conference held in July in Northampton, Mass. The conference accepted competitive papers from scholarly family business programs around the world.

PLU establishes partnership with South African special educators

Education lies at the root of change for South Africa's emerging democracy, and special education professors at PLU are nurturing a partnership with colleagues in that country to cultivate stronger learners.
      At the fifth biennial gathering of the International Association of Special Education (IASE) in Capetown, South Africa, two PLU education professors, Helmi Owens and Paula Leitz, delivered practical, interactive workshops for South African special education teachers who want to provide a better education for the children of the young democracy. The professors were among a 53-member US delegation who attended the conference, which attracted some 460 international special educators.
      In addition to the free workshops, the conference included rare presentation opportunities for the host country's educators and visits to schools in Capetown. South African Minister of Education Sibusiso Bhengu was the featured guest speaker, and his national commission on special needs in education and training, established last year, was also represented.
      Owens and Leitz, co-chairs of South Africa's largest ever education conference, had the vision for this ground-breaking partnership with their colleagues in South Africa.

Independent movie filmed at PLU over the summer

The PLU campus was the backdrop for the independent film "Fielder's Choice," filmed last summer.
      The majority of the 125-minute film, directed by Andrew Finnigan, a 1994 Stadium High School graduate, takes place on the PLU campus with additional filming done in various homes and restaurants in the North End of Tacoma.
      "Fielder's Choice" is a coming-of-age story that chronicles John Fielder's life from high school graduation to his sophmore year in college. Throughout the story we realize Fielder has continuous problems with family, friends and relationships. The story is intermittently narrated by a middle-aged Fielder reflecting on a past that still troubles him.
      The movie stars a number of PLU students, two of whom play the lead roles - Jefferson Davis '97 and junior Meg Sanders.
      In addition to directing, Finnigan is also producing the film, which was written by Pierce College English Instructor Michael Darcher (husband of PLU Communication Instructor Joanne Lisosky). Utah cinematographer Mike Karr, who has several Nike commercials and various documentaries to his credit, lent his expertise behind the camera. Internationally known new age musician and Tacoma native Liz Naccarato provided the soundtrack for the film, which will be released in independent venues this winter.

U.S. News ranks PLU in top 15 of America's best colleges for the Western region

For the second consecutive year, PLU was ranked ninth in the Top 15 Western Region Universities in the U.S. News & World Report 1997 America's Best Colleges issue and guidebook.
      PLU tied for the ninth-place position with Mt. St. Mary's College of California. The rankings were based on academic reputation, retention, faculty resources, student selectivity, financial resources and the alumni giving rate.
      PLU remains the only Northwest school to be listed in all U.S. News best colleges surveys since the practice began in 1983.

Published Corner

Kit Spicer (Communication) recently published "Organizational Public Relations -- A Political Perspective." With the approach grounded on an elaboration of organizations as political systems, the book is about understanding organizations, especially the role played by organizational decision making in the development and implementation of public relations programs and activities.

Family Weekend builds a strong following

Nate Sears '98 (center) and the rest of the student cast of A Night of Musical Theatre entertained the Family Weekend crowd with selections from hit Broadway shows. Pictured is a scene from "Guys and Dolls."

More than 900 people attended Family Weekend 1997 held Oct. 17-19. On Friday evening the Presidential Dessert Reception gave families an opportunity to meet each other as well as President Loren and MaryAnn Anderson. Afterward, many attended the play "Light Up the Sky" in Eastvold Auditorium, or went to the Jars of Clay concert in Olson Auditorium.
      Saturday morning began with the Lute Breakfast, with President Anderson and members of ASPLU providing a campus update. The morning continued with Family University, an opportunity for families to attend classes taught by PLU faculty and staff. Classes included Financial Aid 101, Relaxation Techniques, Ethical Challenges in Health Care, Internet Explorations, Music Appreciation and PLU History.
      Saturday evening's dinner theatre was an unqualified success. An audience of 700 was treated to fine dining, with spectacular entertainment provided by A Night of Musical Theatre, a student musical group. Sunday worship and a continental breakfast brought the weekend to a close.
      Family Weekend '98 is set for Oct. 30-Nov. 1.

Tonn named dean of information resources

Sheri Tonn was named the dean of information resources at PLU in October. Tonn, also a professor of chemistry, was formerly chair of the Division of Natural Sciences, and served as interim executive director of information resources since the summer. Tonn oversees the library and computing and telecommunications services.

Mary Baker Russell leaves legacy of care: 1908-1997

Mary Baker Russell, the delightful philanthropist whose generosity touched thousands of lives in Tacoma, died on Aug. 14. Her gifts supported scholarships, choir tours and the music center named in her honor at PLU, as well as a wing at Mary Bridge Children's Hospital, the Gertrude V. Baker Plaza and Rose Garden (across from Tacoma General Hospital), and an orphanage in Sri Lanka. Russell's devotion to students was apparent in her regular presence at their concerts and in the students' affection toward her. Her enthusiasm and friendship will be missed.

Comments sought by reaccreditation board

Pacific Lutheran University is accredited by the Northwest Association of Schools and Colleges. On April 20-22, 1998, an evaluation committee will conduct the regular 10-year site visit for reaccreditation. PLU's 1989 accreditation was subsequently endorsed by the Northwest Association's Commission on Colleges and reaffirmed in 1994, after an interim site visit. You are invited to send comments about PLU directly to the commission. Your comments must be received in writing no later than March 20, 1998. Comments should be sent to the Northwest Association of Schools and Colleges, 11130 NE 33rd Place, Suite 120, Bellevue, WA 98004. Telephone: 425-827-2005. Fax: 425-827-3395.

Rhine River and the Heart of Europe

You're invited to join Pacific Lutheran University staff and other Lutheran college alumni, family and friends on an exquisite, two-week guided tour, experiencing three enchanting European cities -- Amsterdam, Strasbourg and Paris. You'll spend five of these days sailing into the pages of a storybook as you cruise along the legendary Rhine River, departing July 22, 1998, and returning Aug. 4.
      Tour planners at Vantage Deluxe World Travel have created a tour at a price that can't be matched -- $3,645. This includes tour-trip airfare from a wide variety of U.S. destinations, nine-night hotel accommodations, 27 meals, seven sightseeing tours, five nights aboard the First Class MS Austria river cruise ship and more. An optional two-night post-extension is available to Paris.
      Reserve your space now! For more information, call PLU Alumni and Parent Relations at 800-258-6758.

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